Is FedEx or UPS Cheaper to Ship?

March 23, 2023 Deyman Doolittle

Any business owner knows that shipping costs can be a significant expense, especially if you don’t ship enough volume to qualify for lower rates. 

In this guide, we'll compare the parcel shipping rates and services offered by FedEx and UPS to help you decide which parcel shipping company best suits your needs. 

What Is the Difference Between UPS and FedEx?

UPS (United Parcel Service) is a multinational company providing shipping, logistics services, and global supply chain management solutions. FedEx (Federal Express) is a worldwide delivery and shipping company focused on transportation, e-commerce, and business services. 

UPS and FedEx are similar in that they are both privately-owned courier companies. However, the two companies differ in some areas listed below:


Both UPS and FedEx deliver to over 220 countries and territories. However, UPS is more focused on domestic ground package shipping. This is why UPS has more ground vehicles than FedEx. On the other hand, FedEx specializes in worldwide express deliveries via air freight, which is why it has more aircraft than UPS. 

Based on these facts, we can see why FedEx generally offers cheaper rates on worldwide shipping, and UPS generally offers better rates on domestic shipping.


FedEx Shipping Rates vs. UPS Shipping Rates

Let's look at FedEx vs. UPS rates for common domestic shipping services.
*rates accurate as of March 2023

UPS Ground Shipping Rates vs. FedEx Ground Shipping Rates:

FedEx Ground and FedEx Home Delivery Rates (1-5 days delivery time)

Prices range from $10.10 to $152.56, depending on the weight of your package and the destination zone. 

UPS Ground Shipping Rates

Prices range from $10.10 to $856.00, depending on the weight of your package, the destination zone, and the rate package you use (daily rates or retail rates).


Rates for FedEx Express Shipping Services


FedEx First Overnight

FedEx Priority Overnight 

FedEx Standard Overnight

FedEx 2Day AM

FedEx 2Day

FedEx Express Saver



up to 8 oz.

From $61.25 - $90.41

From $30.25 - $59.41

From $29.54 - $55.79

From $24.05 - $41.49

From $22.59 - $37.55

From $21.03 - $34.37

Shipments in all other packaging

From $68.04 - $1,594.50

From $37.04 - $1,548.00

From $33.87 - $1,474.50 

From $25.37 - $1,309.50  

From $22.59 - $1,104.00

From $21.03 - $940.50

Rates for Express UPS shipping services


UPS Next Day Air Early

UPS Next Day Air

UPS Next Day Air Saver 

UPS 2nd Day Air AM.

UPS 2nd Day Air

Standard Package

From $67.44 - $1,742.67

From $37.44 - $1,750.83

From $34.22 - $1,489.25

From $24.95 - $1,311.73

From $22.82 - $1,139.60

Package over 150 pounds (price-per-pound)

From $2.68 - $11.42

From $2.68 - $11.67

From $2.63 - $9.93

From $2.68 - $11.42

From $1.72 - $7.60


UPS Vs FedEx: Company Facts

UPS Facts and Company Structure

FedEx Facts and Company Structure

Founded: August 28, 1907 in Seattle, Washington

Headquarters: Atlanta, GA


Employees: More than 500,000

Service area: More than 220 countries and territories

Customers: Approx. 1.7 million shipping and 11.8 million delivery (2021)

Operating facilities: More than 1,800 leased and owned facilities

Delivery fleet: Over 120,000 package cars, vans, tractors, and motorcycles,

including more than 13,000 alternative fuel and advanced technology vehicles

UPS jet aircraft: Owned & finance leases – 289

Operating leases & charters – 296

Founded: May 5, 1971 in Little Rock, Arkansas

Headquarters: Memphis, TN


Employees: More than 500,000

Service area: More than 220 countries and territories

Aircraft: 697

Motorized vehicles: over 210,000

FedEx Office locations: 2,200


What Is the Cheapest Way to Ship a Package?

As you may know, there is no cut-and-dry answer to this question, because the cheapest way to ship a package depends on many factors, including distance, the weight of the package, shipping service, etc. 

If you’re looking for the cheapest way to ship boxes to another state, the best approach is to find the most affordable service for shipping packages of specific weights, as shown below: 

What is the cheapest way to ship a 1-pound package?

USPS Retail Ground and USPS First Class Package are the cheapest ways to ship a 1-pound package. 

What is the cheapest way to ship a 2lb package?

USPS Retail Ground and USPS Priority Mail are the cheapest options for shipping packages with weights of between 1-5 pounds. 

What is the cheapest way to ship a 20 lb package?

UPS Ground and FedEx Ground are the cheapest options for sending 20 lb packages.

What is the cheapest way to ship a 50 lbs package?

The cheapest way to ship a heavy package weighing 50 lbs is UPS Ground or FedEx Ground. 

Save On UPS and FedEx Shipping Costs With ShipSigma

Whether you choose UPS or FedEx for your shipments, ShipSigma can help make sure you’re getting the best shipping rates possible. With over 300 years of combined experience with major shipping carriers, the staff at ShipSigma will handle all your contract analyses, rate negotiations, and refunds to ensure you’re always getting the best deal. We save our customers an average of 25.2% on shipping costs. Contact us today to get started.  

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